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Meralco Zaps Ginebra
PBA.ph, Friday, 21-Nov-2014

ANTIPOLO – Meralco, playing with great determination against Barangay Ginebra San Miguel and its formidable team, ended its search for the elusive first win in the Ynares Sports Center here Friday night.

With an untiring up-tempo game, the Bolts cut down to size Greg Slaughter, Japeth Aguilar and the whole Ginebra squad, pulling off a 109-99 upset to improve to joint fifth place in the PBA Philippine Cup.

The Bolts broke ground at the Ynares Center and ruined the night of Mark Caguioa who, with 11 points, became only the 20th PBA player to hit the 9,000-point mark.

Slaughter and Aguilar came through with their usual numbers, but the Bolts found a way to win and tie the GlobalPort Batang Pier and the Talk n Text Tropang Texters at fifth place at 4-3.

Moving down to fourth were the Kings at 5-3.

“We are pretty used being undersized and I’m glad the players came out with a lot of effort,” said Meralco coach Norman Black.

“We’re still in the running and we just need to settle down and make an effort everyday,” added Black, hopeful of high seeding in the playoffs.

Jared Dillinger, Gary David, Cliff Hodge, Reynel Hugnatan, Mark Macapagal and Anjo Caram were among those who churned out A1 effort leading Meralco to its fourth win following earlier victories over Barako Bull, Blackwater and NLEX.

Overcoming a lot of disadvantages, the Bolts held sway all throughout the last three quarters.

Josh Urbiztondo stole off Simon Atkins, drained two charities and made a good alley-oop inbound to Greg Slaughter in exciting sequences in the closing seconds of the third period, allowing the Kings to narrow the gap at 77-81.

Earlier, Hodge and Macapacal rifled in two triples and a total of 12 points each as the Bolts took the half at 53-44.

In the first 24 minutes of play, Hodge also came through with four rebounds and one assist as a starter while Macapagal also got away with two assists and two steals playing seven minutes of relief job.

Down by two, 26-24, in the opening quarter, the Bolts spurted ahead in the second period on a 15-to-nothing run capped by a triple and a long two by Hodge.

Towards the end of the first quarter, Caguioa nailed two quick baskets off the bench to reach the 9,000-point mark.

Those ahead of Caguioa in the all-time scoring ladder are Ramon Fernandez, Abet Guidaben, Alvin Patrimonio, Atoy Co, Nelson Asaytono, Philip Cezar, Jojo Lastimosa, Bogs Adornado, Robert Jaworski, Allan Caidic, Jerry Codinera, Benjie Paras, Francis Arnaiz, Freddie Hubalde, Manny Victorino, Vergel Meneses, Arnie Tuadles, and Jun Limpot.

With 9,019 points, Limpot’s hold of 19th spot could be grabbed by Caguioa in their next game or two. (SB)

The scores:

MERALCO 109 – Hodge 18, Macapagal 18, David 16, Dillinger 15, Hugnatan 12, Ferriols 8, Caram 6, Buenafe 4, Atkins 4, Sena 4, Ildefonso 2, Cortez 2, Guevarra 0.

GINEBRA 99 – Slaughter 26, Aguilar 18, Yeo 15, Caguioa 11, Baracael 10, Ellis 7, Tenorio 4, Mamaril 3, Brondial 3, Urbiztondo 2, Reyes 0, Helterbrand 0, Monfort 0, Forrester 0.

Quarterscores: 24-26, 53-44, 81-77, 109-99

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